The UCI announced today it has approved the reduction in team sizes for all international men's road races beginning in 2018.
The maximum allowed for all races will now be seven riders, with teams of eight for the three Grand Tours - the Giro d'Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a España.
For the Women's WorldTour, teams will continue to be limited to six for one-day races and seven for stage races.
The Pro Cycling Council approved the reduction in team sizes at its meeting in June, with rider safety being the key driver for the move. It was given the official stamp by the UCI Management Committee at its meeting in Bergen, Norway on Tuesday.
The Grand Tour organisers have been pushing for a reduction in team sizes in order to open up the races and prevent one team from controlling the race. Last year, the ASO, RCS Sport and Flanders Classics organisers attempted to reduce their team sizes for 2017, but faced objections from the UCI and mixed opinions from teams for doing so without consulting all the stakeholders.
Races such as the Tour de Pologne have experimented with smaller teams with permission from the UCI.
The UCI also made some changes to other disciplines, adding Short Track Cross-Country to the MTB World Championships event list, and expanding the prize list for the MTB worlds to €10,000, and World Cups to €6,500.
World Championship venues were awarded to the following cities:
- 2018 UCI Four-cross World Championships: Val di Sole (Italy)
- 2018 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships: Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)
- 2019 UCI Track Cycling World Championships: Pruszkow (Poland)
- 2019 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships: Apeldoorn (Netherlands)
- 2020 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships: Dübendorf (Switzerland)